More On Christian Nationalist Racism

Worldliness isn’t a leftist trait. It’s not just progressive “Christians” who can be deceived by unbiblical views on race. Satan is cunning. If he’s able to deceive Puritans into embracing white supremacy, he’s able to deceive conservative protestants into embracing Kinism.

Kinism is an ideology within some Reformed circles that teaches that a person’s so-called race makes them “kins” or related to people within their racial group. According to Kinists, all white people have a shared ethnicity and culture that should be preserved. Therefore they support racial segregation in communities and families. Meaning, they’re especially opposed to immigration (not just illegal immigration) and “interracial” marriage.

. . . These Kinists are significantly smaller in number and influence than professing Christians who’ve embraced critical race theory. However, they’re less uncommon than you might think.

. . . Stephen Wolfe is one of the most influentual Kinists in evangelical circles. He’s the author of the popular book, The Case For Christian Nationalism. On Twitter last year, he said:

“while intermarriage is not itself wrong (as an individual matter), groups have a collective duty to be separate and marry among themselves…there is a difference between something being sinful absolutely and something being sinful relatively. Interethnic marriage can be sinful relatively and absolutely.”

He’s since deleted those tweets. But his tweets are consistent with his words in The Case For Christian Nationalism: 

“People of different ethnic groups can exercise respect for difference, conduct some routine business with each other, join in inter-ethnic alliances for mutual good, and exercise common humanity (e.g., the good Samaritan), but they cannot have a life together that goes beyond mutual alliance…What I am saying is that in-group solidarity and right of difference along ethnic lines are necessary for the complete good for each and all.”

. . . For what it’s worth, Stephen Wolfe claims he isn’t a Kinist. But Big Eva leaders who adopt Black Lives Matter talking points also say they aren’t critical race theorists.
Read more»

Samuel Sey | “Why Some Evangelicals Are Embracing Racism” | August 19th, 2023


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4 comments

  1. I don’t want to speak in detail on Stephen Wolfe since 1) he denies being a kinist, and 2) I haven’t read the full body of his work, or enough of it to be sure he’s being fairly represented.

    The modern kinists generally draw their inspiration from the American South and “Lost Cause” theories of the Confederacy which posit that slavery was good for Black people and was a system of patriarchal care of superiors for inferiors, and met the standards for such a system described in the Westminster Larger Catechism. I have zero tolerance for a system which, as Jonathan Edwards’ own son wrote in a devastating and (in my view) unanswerable tract against slavery, was fundamentally based on the sin of “manstealing.” Because its roots were in the sin of manstealing, American race-based chattel slavery cannot in any way be redeemed, no matter how much some slaveowners may in fact have cared for their slaves. Men may love their dogs and their dogs may love them back, but human beings are not dogs and may not be owned when captured in an unjust war, which was the foundation of the Atlantic slave trade.

    But neo-Confederate stuff is not the only root of these things.

    I’m a Grand Rapids native and a Calvin graduate. I have an interracial marriage. I spent decades in the Dutch Reformed world, more than long enough to know that these sentiments of “separate development of the races” are not absent, particularly among people a generation older than me who are now usually retired.

    I could cite nightmare stories. I’ll cite just one, because the minister involved is a man I respect on most issues and who I know made his comments to help and not to hurt me. When I asked a prominent former CRC minister, when I was about to announce my engagement, how he thought the Dutch Reformed world would respond, he responded with this: “Darrell, it will probably be okay. We all know you can’t marry one of our girls.”

    His blunt comment was true and we both knew it. Decades later there are many “uitlanders” (outsiders) who have married Dutch Reformed women and have successful marriages and are leading ministers and elders in some of the most conservative of the Dutch Reformed denominations. Thirty years ago it would have been far more difficult, and I know from many comments by men a generation older than that who married Dutch women that things were tremendously more difficult for people who are now in their eighties or nineties. The stories are horrifying and heartbreaking.

    South African apartheid was, at least arguably, a far more successful system than the chattel slavery of the American South, both politically and religiously. That doesn’t mean it was right. Telling people of other races (or non-Dutch white ethnic groups) that they would be better off in another church — which is EXACTLY what was said to plenty of non-Dutch people by ministers and elders in the Dutch Reformed world — simply is not biblical.

  2. “while intermarriage is not itself wrong (as an individual matter), groups have a collective duty to be separate and marry among themselves…there is a difference between something being sinful absolutely and something being sinful relatively. Interethnic marriage can be sinful relatively and absolutely.”

    This is the kind of claim that just can’t account for Native American marriage practices in the Pacific Northwest. Ronald Leroy Olson wrote about the Quinault and pointed out that because they believed they all were ultimately descended from a shared ancestor untold generations back their custom was to never marry within the tribe because of an incest taboo. The boilerplate canards of some kinists would suggest that such a tribe would have or should have died out generations ago but the Quinault have been around on the Olympic peninsula for untold generations and are a federally and state-recognized tribe.

    Given the propensity of some kinists to treat Southern Presbyterianism as the be-all end-all of North American Reformed … I find it annoying that not much mention is made of the fact that there have been Presbyterians among the Nez Perce since about the time of Chief Joseph. Native American Calvinists are hardly abundant but they DO exist and my Dad was Native American and Calvinist in his soteriology (not necessarily Reformed as would be defined at Heidelblog, I suspect).

    Dutch Reformed racism might be a reminder that rejecting postmillennialism as it appears in theonomistic projects is no guard against racist ideas being arrived at on other grounds. I admit that having grown up the son of a Native American Calvinist my animosity toward postmillennialism has been informed by hearing how Manifest Destiny was applied. That didn’t make my Native American relatives anti-Calvinist or anti-Reformed, but it did mean I picked up a few personal reasons (besides the exegetical ones) for viewing postmillennialism as a sub-par doctrine at best and as a rationale for racist atrocities at worst. I like Puritans on soteriology and sanctification (I’m loving some Richard Sibbes lately) but their millennialism I can more than do without.

  3. If it ain’t Dutch….

    There is much racism in our hearts but may it continue to be exorcised by the Gospel. Where did Stephen Wolfe come from and why does anyone care what he says?

  4. A few earnest tentative attemps to process what Sey is saying:

    1. Christian Nationalism shares with Social Justice the tendency to wrongly elide Church/State or Moral/Civil distinctions. One tool to help understand what is being taught under either heading (Christian Nationalism or Social Justice) is to swap the terms.

    2. Christian Nationalism is sometimes associated with kinism, which relies on race essentialism. But the Social Justice association with White Repentance also relies on race essentialism. It’s wrong to say whites must associate with or perpetuate white culture; and it’s wrong in the same way to say that whites must repent for white culture or slavery.

    3. Our (PCA) church came out of the Randy Nabors tradition: “White people as a group are indicted for America’s racism,” and must negate “whiteness as superior or equal.” (Every Precious Stone, available on Amazon) I’ve never heard pro-white racism taught, and have only been taught the anti-white racism.

    4. I am all for reparations in the traditional sense: If I break my neighbor’s window I should be required to pay for it. But in the racialized sense, reparations often means requiring one man to pay for another man’s window because the guy who broke it shared his skin color. When Nabors accuses whites of racism just because they’re white, he is abstracting the real guilt of manstealing, murder & rape etc to apply it to others based on their group identity. I think this abstraction and transfer relies on racism, teaches racism, and is racist.

    5. Morality based on whiteness is wrong regardless whether it’s pro-white or anti-white. But zoom out a bit. Wrong group identity association is permeating the church in sex/gender/orientation as well as race. White Repentance parallels Straight Repentance. The same teaching of diversity, the same Scripture, the same Jew/Gentile lens, the same eschatological vision is (wrongly) applied. And it’s the same abstraction and transfer of real guilt based on contemporary social group (neologistic) identity.

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